SGFD FFs charged with nepotism
When the City of St Gabriel incorporated it's charter required a Fire Chief be appointed for the City. The Mayor decided to appoint the chief of the local Volunteer Fire Department, which served the fire district, as the town's paid fire chief. The Fire Chief would work out of the parish owned stations and wear both VFD and city FD hats at once. When the City got the budget to hire firefighters to man the stations they depended on the Chief to recommend who should be hired. The firefighters, like the chief, would "wear two hats" being members of the VFD, which allowed them to operate the parish owned trucks, and at the same time be paid employees of the City FD. So where does the Chief hire from? The volunteer pool of course. The members are already trained on operation of the Parish owned Fire Trucks and have bunker gear issued so there is no cost to the City except for salaries.
Now, think for a moment, who makes up most of the membership in many small VFDs? Yep, you guessed it. Family members of the Chief. And who do you think the Chief recommended for hires with the Paid City FD? You guessed it.
Well, it seems that about a year ago someone tipped the State Labor Board and Ethic Board to some things happening in St Gabriel and investigations began.
Now 4 former paid Firefighters, members of the Chiefs family, are fined $500 each for violating the State's Ethics code against Nepotism. Ouch.
The judgements can be seen at-
It will be interesting to see if the Chief and the City are fined next or if this is the extent of the rulling.